Here, they use phylogenetic and trait dispersion approaches to determine the relative contribution of limiting similarity and environmental filtering to community assembly of stream fishes at an intercontinental scale. The authors sampled stream fishes from five zoogeographic regions. Analysis of traits associated with habitat use, feeding, or both resulted in more occurrences of trait underdispersion than overdispersion regardless of spatial scale or species pool. The results suggest that environmental filtering and, to a lesser extent, species interactions were important mechanisms of community assembly for fishes inhabiting small, low‐gradient streams in all five regions. However, a large proportion of the trait dispersion values were no different from random. This suggests that stochastic factors or opposing assembly mechanisms also influenced stream fish assemblages and their trait dispersion patterns.
Bower, L.M. and K.O. Winemiller
19 November 2019
Ecology and Evolution
Community assembly, Environmental filtering, Fish functional diversity, Phylogenetic diversity